Revelation 21 and 22 bring us to the end of our epic story, The Bible. We started 100 entries ago with Genesis 1:1, “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.” We end today with the new heaven and the new earth and the new Jerusalem and Jesus coming to live among his people. Our epic villain, Satan, tried to thwart our epic hero, God, but through weak and frail creatures like you and me, the story continued. Yes there were intermissions, false starts, failed protégés and surprising unexpected heroes from very inconspicuous origins. Victory was won not with a military intervention, without nuclear weapons, without panoramic plots but by ordinary people choosing God’s way of love, forgiveness and reconciliation. Amazing.
Chapter 21 tells of the coming of the new Jerusalem arriving like a bride for her wedding. We cannot imagine the beauty described, golden streets and dazzling gates. God will dwell among his people and be their light. He will walk and talk with them as in the Garden of Eden. There will be no more death or mourning. Hard to imagine. In fact, that little word “new” seems to precede most of the descriptions. We cannot imagine a world were everything does not wear out and die and need to be replaced. What is life without death? Certainly a new adventure.
Chapter 22 continues describing the presence of God, the river of the water of life flowing from a throne and trees of life to eat from. John affirms he is only the recorder and we hear the words from Jesus that he is coming soon. The Bible ends with the promise, “He who testifies to these things says, ‘Yes, I am coming soon.’ Amen. Come, Lord Jesus. The grace of the Lord Jesus be with God’s people. Amen.” “Amen” means agreement and may it be so. I do not understand what that new life will be like but I tire of this life of death and tragedy and injustice.
So as you think of a new start, the ability to wipe the slate clean and start over again, what kind of story would you write for yourself? How would you like to finish these sentences: In the beginning..
- Context and scenery________________
- Challenges (ie doing what)____________
Amen, Lord, may it be so. Come soon!
Blessings as you wait.